Environmental Literacy Grants (ELG) support projects that inform, educate, and inspire a diverse pool of educators, students and the public to use Earth systems science toward both improving ocean and coastal stewardship and increasing safety and resilience to environmental hazards. These grants support formal and informal education activities at local, regional, and national levels to address the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) mission of science, service, and stewardship. This mission is directed toward a vision of the future where communities and their ecosystems are healthy and resilient in the face of sudden or prolonged change.
The goal of this program is to build environmental literacy of K-12 students and the public so they are knowledgeable of the ways in which their community can become more resilient to extreme weather and/or other environmental hazards, and become involved in achieving that resilience. Projects should build the collective environmental literacy necessary for communities to become more resilient to the extreme weather and other environmental hazards they face in the short- and long-term. Building sufficient environmental literacy in a community means that these communities are composed of individuals who are supported by formal and informal education that develop their knowledge, skills, and confidence to:
- reason about the ways that human and natural systems interact globally and where they live, including the acknowledgement of disproportionately distributed vulnerabilities;
- participate in scientific and/or civic processes; and
- consider scientific uncertainty, cultural knowledge, and diverse community values in decision making.
Projects should demonstrate how they will engage community members to build these capabilities, particularly through active learning, during the award period. Projects should leverage and incorporate relevant state and local hazard mitigation and/or adaptation plans and collaborate with individuals and institutions that are involved in efforts to develop or implement those plans. Projects may focus on a single location or multiple locations and a single type of environmental hazard or a range of hazards that impact a community or communities. Projects will be based on the established scientific evidence about current and future extreme weather and other environmental hazards facing communities and should consider relevant socioeconomic and ecological factors in the targeted location(s). Particular attention should be paid to populations within communities that have greater exposure and have fewer resources to deal with the impacts of extreme weather and/or environmental hazards that are the focus of the project. Projects must relate to NOAA's mission in at least one of the following areas: ocean, coastal, Great Lakes, weather, and climate sciences and stewardship. They must also utilize NOAA's scientific data, data access tools, data visualizations, and/or other physical and intellectual assets available on these topics. In order to facilitate the use of NOAA's assets, projects are strongly encouraged to partner with relevant NOAA entities (offices, programs, etc.) and/or NOAA employees and affiliates. Also, projects should consider integrating citizen science tools when appropriate.
This funding opportunity has two priorities, numbered without regard to importance for funding:
- Priority 1 awards will support new projects taking place in the Central and Eastern Regions of the United States. These regions include the following states: Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming. The entirety of a project must only serve audiences located in one or more of the listed states.
- Priority 2 awards will support the evolution of projects funded under the 2015-2018 funding opportunities from this program (NOAA-SEC-OED-2015-2004408, NOAA-SEC-OED 2016- 2004737, and NOAA-SEC-OED-2018-2005455). The full list of awards that support or supported eligible projects can be found here: https://go.usa.gov/xFWXS. Projects for this priority must be implemented within the United States and its territories.
Projects must be implemented within the United States and its territories. They may be implemented on local to regional scales. The project description should include a justification of the proposed geographic scale of a project and discussion of the project components that might be applicable to projects in other places.